Many circumstances can lead to the decision to file for a divorce. You can decide to divorce because of growing apart, infidelity, financial irresponsibility, violence, addiction, and other intolerable behaviour and circumstances. When you choose to walk away, and the other party is not ready, you have to serve them with papers. The process should be straightforward in most cases, but it can get complicated depending on your living arrangements.
Typically, people decide to file after spending a reasonable length of time away from their partners. If your partner has changed address, or there are other reasons why you cannot access them, you can still fulfil this step of the divorce process by following these three steps.
You Can Serve Them By Post
Before sending the papers by post, you will have to ask the court to grant you the service order. Among the documents that you will mail to your spouse is an acknowledgment that they received the papers. They should sign and return it to you. The other documents you might be required to include are the family separation brochure and the actual application for divorce. Finally, ensure that you attach a letter explicitly asking them to sign the acknowledgment form and return it.
Ensure you send them to their last known address for ease of access. If they sign and return the acknowledgment, the next step is completing the affidavit, which indicates you have successfully served your spouse by post. On the other hand, if they do not respond, you can reach out to the court to give you extra time to serve your spouse.
You Can Serve Them Through Their Lawyer
Separation is an emotional process. Instead of engaging an emotional spouse, you can choose to deal with their attorney. A legal professional understands the law and its impartiality. They will not frustrate your efforts to hand over the papers.
Once you serve them, they will sign and submit the acknowledgment, which you will use as proof you served your spouse to proceed to the next step.
You Can Ask the Court to Dispense Service
If you try all the methods, and your spouse is non-responsive or uncooperative, you can also apply for a court-ordered dispensation of service. A divorce attorney can help you determine whether you took all the necessary steps before getting to the stage.
The critical thing is to have a competent divorce lawyer guiding you through these processes. Their legal expertise will help you navigate the process with ease and speed up the separation process.
If you need to serve divorce papers, contact a lawyer for more information.